March 16, 2012 2 Comments
Backyard Bible Adventures, Vol. I:
Logan Meets Goliath
A lesson on bullying
When they hurled their insults at Him, He did not retaliate; when He suffered, He made no threats. Instead, He entrusted Himself to Him who judges justly.
1 Peter 2:23
“And that’s how Goliath was defeated,” said Dad as he closed the Bible. Dad and Logan had just read the story of David and Goliath during their daily morning Bible study.
“Wow!” said Logan. “You mean a kid like me killed a giant? And it’s all TRUE?”
“Every word of it,” said Dad. “But remember, he couldn’t have killed the giant without God’s help.”
No longer listening, Logan hopped up from the couch, said so long to his dad, and marched outside into the backyard to do some giant hunting.
“Let’s see,” said Logan to himself. “If I’m going to take on a giant, I’m going to need a weapon.” He searched through his box of toys in the garage and found some armor, a helmet and a sword. But being so small, he found it hard and tiresome to walk through the backyard with all that weight. So he ditched the helmet, then the armor, then his sword.
“I know!” he said. “David went up to Goliath with just five rocks. I’ll do the same thing.” So Logan filled his pockets with five rocks. Two in one pocket, and three in the other. He marched through the backyard in search of his giant.
Soon, the hedge was no longer a hedge, but crowds of people looking into a wide valley. “That’s where the giant would be,” thought Logan. He pushed through the crowd of people and there, just on the other side, he saw… nothing.
“Hmm,” thought Logan. “I wonder where the giants could be?” Then, from behind a tree jumped Billy Crumb, the neighborhood bully.
“Hey Logan-Pogean. What do you have in your pants?” he asked, pointing out Logan’s bulging pockets. “It looks like you had an accident!”
But to Logan, it wasn’t Billy Crumb, it was THE GIANT! “Back off, Giant!” yelled Logan. “These aren’t accidents. These are rocks,” he said as he took one out of his pocket. “And it will be no accident when one hits you on the head.”
“Ooh, I’m so scared,” chided Billy. “You’re such a dork.”
“Don’t call me a dork,” said Logan.
“Logan is a dork, Logan is a dork!” sang Billy.
“Don’t, or I’ll throw this at you,” said Logan cranking the rock behind him.
“Logan-Pogean is a dorkey-workey who still wears a diaper!”
Logan grew so angry that he hurled that rock right at Billy’s head. CRACK! Went the rock and Billy fell hard to the ground. “Oww!” he cried.
Logan felt bad as soon as he did it. “Oh no,” he said. “I’m busted.”
“You’re busted,” Dad said that night. “Why did you throw a rock at Billy’s head?” he asked as he came into Logan’s room. Logan was sitting on his bed, his head in his hands. He had been watching the clock, dreading his dad coming home. “Why did you do it?” Dad asked again.
“I was trying to be like David when he beat Goliath,” said Logan. “Just like you read to me from the Bible.”
“David wasn’t a bully,” said Dad.
“So why did he throw the rock at Goliath?” asked Logan.
“Because Goliath was making fun of God, and tormenting God’s people. David had a good reason to do what he did.”
“But Billy Crumb was making fun of me,” complained Logan. “Wasn’t that a good reason to throw a rock at him?”
“No. If someone is making fun of you, you just walk away. Or do something nice for them. Do you remember when Jesus was made fun of before He was nailed to the cross?”
“He was. The Roman guards made fun of Him, and they even spat on Him. But He didn’t throw any rocks at them, or hit them or yell at them.”
“What did He do?”
“He prayed for them,” said Dad. “He didn’t beat them up, even though He could have. He was much stronger than the guards. But He knew that He was doing it for you and me and all of God’s children. He was protecting us from Satan. Just like David was protecting God’s children from Goliath. Besides, God was on David’s side. You don’t think that one little stone could have really killed a giant without God’s help, do you?”
“No, I guess not,” said Logan, thinking about this. “Otherwise, Billy Crumb probably would have died.”
“And I certainly wouldn’t want to make that phone call to his parents.”
“Am I grounded?” asked Logan.
“For a real long time. No TV, no comics, no Wii for two weeks. You can NEVER throw a rock, or your fist at anyone.”
“Even if I know God is on my side?”
“I don’t think you’ll ever have to protect God’s people from a dangerous bad guy. If you did, then yes, God would have you fight for them. But as far as neighborhood bullies go, God would want you to speak kind words or do something nice for them instead.”
Logan went to bed that night with a lot on his mind. He thought that fighting someone sounded so much cooler than being nice. Either way, he knew he would have to apologize to Billy, and that would be hard. But it would be the right thing to do.
He found Billy the next day. He had a big bandage on his head where his rock had hit him. “I’m sorry I hit you with my rock,” said Logan.
Billy didn’t answer him. He just sort of scowled and walked away. Logan just stood there, wondering why he wouldn’t accept his apology.
But just as he was about to walk back to his yard, he heard another bully teasing Billy about the bandage on his head. “What happened Billy? Did you get a boo-boo? Do you need Mommy to kiss it and make it all better for you?”
“Stop it,” said Billy.
But the bully kept teasing him. “Billy the baby. Billy the baby!”
Just then, Logan knew what his dad was talking about. This was his chance to be like David, because David was protecting other people from Goliath. This was Logan’s chance to protect Billy from the bully.
“Stop it!” said Logan, standing between Billy and the bigger bully. “Billy asked you to stop picking on him.”
“Yeah? And what are you going to do about it?” asked the bully.
Not having thought it through, Logan stuttered and stammered saying, “Er, um, I, uh…” but then he got an idea. “If you stop picking on Billy I’ll give you my cookies at school tomorrow.” he suggested.
The bully was confused. “What?”
“Leave Billy alone and I’ll give you my cookies tomorrow.”
“Fine, whatever,” said the bully. And he shoved Logan down then walked away.
“Thanks,” said Billy, helping Logan up. “Why did you do that for me?”
“It’s what Jesus would have done,” said Logan.
“Who?” asked Billy.
“Jesus. Someone who did the same thing for me. Only, He gave a lot more than just a few cookies. He gave His life.”
“You’re making that up, aren’t you?” asked Billy.
“Nope. Not one word. It’s all true. Hey, do you want to go play a game in my backyard?”
“Sure. What do you want to play?”
“I don’t know. We can hunt giants, I guess. I’ll tell you all about one that lived a long time ago.”
Questions for your kids:
1. In the beginning of the story, Dad says, “David couldn’t have killed Goliath without God’s help.” How did God help David kill Goliath?
2. Was it right of Logan to think that Billy Crumb was just as bad as Goliath? What made Goliath worse than Billy Crumb?
3. David and Logan both threw a rock at their bully’s head, but what makes them different?
4. Why would being nice to someone stop them from being mean? Will it always work? Did it work for Jesus?